Paddies and forest

More on Candi Dasa

The picturesque hills and villages surrounding Candi Dasa offer a range of short or longer treks for when you have that, “I just want to get off my lazy…” kind of mood and they can make for an ideal diversion away from just gazing out over the sea.

Travelfish says:

Fantastic views to be had.

Kastala to Tenganan trek
The mostly downhill trek from Kastala to the Bali Aga village of Tenganan takes a very enjoyable two or three hours, passing stunning rice paddies and forested areas.

We used the services of Made Toto from Candi Dasa Trekking. You could try to do this walk independently, but we would recommend using a local guide, not because you might get lost (which is entirely possible), but as it will enhance the experience. Guides can also ensure you aren’t committing any faux pas or breaking local rules too — our guide was great, explaining Balinese culture and agriculture, and he was a fun companion too.

Plenty of friendly faces along the way

Plenty of friendly faces along the way.

We were transported to the start of the walk at Bebandem village, a 40-minute drive from Candi Dasa. The trek began at a rather bizarrely out of place tattoo shop — if you fancy getting some ink in the middle of nowhere, we know a place.

Walking through farms and rice paddies, Toto explained the various aspects of rice production in Bali (they were planting), and showed us examples of fruit and spices growing in surrounding farms. Not only was this interesting, but the views were spectacular.

Turmeric, just like that.

Turmeric, just like that.

One area we passed grows aren palm, used locally to produce tuak palm wine, and palm sugar — but mostly wine here. He pulled out turmeric and ginger to show us, and pointed out rambutan, soursop, jackfruit, wild pepper and coffee. Toto is also a bit of a bamboo expert — we didn’t know there are so many kinds or uses. The special ones used for the outriggers of fishing boats are huge.

No trekking sandals for her.

The rice terraces are some of the most impressive we’ve seen in Bali — and they go for miles. Parts of the walk were narrow as we continued along the irrigation channels, and some more forested sections are steeper and muddy, but we had no problem in trekking sandals. We carried trekking poles, and they are recommend for some sections.

Towards the end of the walk, we entered a durian forest. Several bamboo platforms with solid bamboo roofs, and a few tents — also with bamboo roofs — had been recently erected for durian season. This area of land is owned by Tenganan village — the local law is that noone is allowed to pick the durian. They must wait until it falls from the trees — and then the race is on. The bamboo huts are to protect the waiting locals from the dangers of the falling heavy and spiky fruit.

Coffee slowly ripening.

One man told us about a durian falling on his back when he went to grab a newly fallen fruit — he showed us the scars. Ouch! These durian are not usually for sale, but we were able to negotiate a price (we LOVE durian). It was sweet, creamy and oh so good.

Dragging ourselves away, we walked into the indigenous Bali Aga village of Tenganan Pegringsingan. Toto gave us a brief explanation, and apologised that he wasn’t from the village, so only could give us an outsider’s view, however it was an still an interesting and informative explanation.



We thought the walk was great. It’s easy enough for fit kids and not so fit adults, and short enough to have some beach time later. We also thought we learnt something.

The cost of the walk including return transport is 250,000 rupiah per person (minimum two people). For one person, it’s 300,000 rupiah. If you have your own transport to drop you and pick up (different start and finish points) the cost can be reduced.

Candi Dasa Trekking: T: (0819) 1618 3122;;

Other guided trekking options around Candi Dasa:
Gumung to Candi Dasa: A hilly four-hour trek that is a little more strenuous than the Kastala trek. 300,000 rupiah per person (minimum two).
Candi Dasa to Virgin Beach via Pura Gumang: A hilly two-hour trek that includes a visit to the monkey temple. 150,000 rupiah per person (minimum two).
Plantation trek Asak to Bugbug: An easy two-hour trek suitable for kids and the elderly. 200,000 rupiah per person (minimum two).

Reviewed by

Sally spent twelve years leading tourists around Indonesia and Malaysia where she collected a lot of stuff. She once carried a 40kg rug overland across Java. Her house has been described as a cross between a museum and a library. Fuelled by coffee, she can often be found riding her bike or petting stray cats. Sally believes travel is the key to world peace.

Tours in Indonesia

Our top 4 other sights and activities in and around Candi Dasa

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Virgin Beach

A great beach day out

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Snorkelling and diving

Grab a boatman

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Tenganan Bali Aga villages

The original Bali

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Candi Dasa view point

Strenous but worth the effort